Seamos Parte de la Revolución de la Iglesia


Little-Church1

La ala Pentecostal y carismática del cuerpo de Cristo busca señales y prodigios. Si el predicador no se echa un grito cuando predica, si no habla en lenguas, si nadie se cae bajo el poder del Espíritu Santo o si nadie tiembla, se concluye que Dios no estuvo en su servicio.

         Ese afán por expresiones carismáticas o visibles nos han llevado a convertirnos en expertos en lo que a controlar emociones se refiere. Si queremos que la gente brinque y tiemble, le damos duro y rápido a la percusión. Si queremos que la gente llore, entonces recurrimos al piano, la guitarra y la melodía suave y dulce que provoque dichas lágrimas.

         Yo no tengo ningún problema con que expresemos nuestro amor a Dios de forma visible ya sea a través de una danza, una canción y adoración a Dios avivada. No me importa si te sientes con deseos de correr o gritar, levantar tus manos mientras declaras tu amor a Dios, etc. No tengo problema con que se ore por los enfermos; yo creo en la sanidad divina.

         El problema que estoy viendo es que estamos poniendo tanto énfasis en la expresiones carismáticas que nos estamos olvidando de la sana doctrina. Lo cierto es esto, si alguien ora por mi para que yo sea sanado de la diabetes, mas después de ser sanado yo sigo comiendo exceso de arroz, pan, pasta y todos esas comidas y bebidas altas en azúcar y carbohidratos es cuestión de tiempo antes de que vuelva a sufrir de diabetes.

         La Iglesia en los tiempos de los apóstoles originales tenía unas poderosas características.

 

43 Y toda persona tenía temor: y muchas maravillas y señales eran hechas por los apóstoles.

44 Y todos los que creían estaban juntos; y tenían todas las cosas comunes;

45 Y vendían las posesiones, y las haciendas, y repartíanlas á todos, como cada uno había menester.

46 Y perseverando unánimes cada día en el templo, y partiendo el pan en las casas, comían juntos con alegría y con sencillez de corazón,

47 Alabando á Dios, y teniendo gracia con todo el pueblo. Y el Señor añadía cada día á la iglesia los que habían de ser salvos. Hechos 2:43-47 (Reina Valera Antigua)

 

Esta era una Iglesia que se caracterizaba por:

 

  1. El temor de Jehová entre ellos. (Verso 43)
  2. Las maravillas y señales que Dos hacía a través de los apóstoles. (Verso 43)
  3. Unidad (Verso 44)
  4. La confianza que le tenían al liderazgo de la Iglesia. (Verso 45) (Hechos 4:34-35)[1]
  5. Su alegría (Verso 46)
  6. Su simpleza (Pureza, sinceridad) (Verso 46)
  7. Su alabanza a Dios (Verse 47)
  8. Su favor para con Dios y los hombres. (Verso 47)
  9. Su crecimiento en términos de nuevas almas las cuales eran salvas por Dios. (Verso 47)

 

         ¿Qué iglesia no quisiera disfrutar de características tan poderosas? Nótese que no mencioné el verso 42; Y perseveraban en la doctrina de los apóstoles, y en la comunión, y en el partimiento del pan, y en las oraciones.” (RVA) Esto se debe a que el Señor me mostró que estas características fluyen única y exclusivamente cuando:

  1. La Iglesia persevera en la Doctrina de los Apóstoles y (Profetas[2]):

 

  • No hay nada más importante después de la salvación que el aprender las doctrinas apostólicas y lo fundamentado por los profetas.
  • Esto es el estudio del Viejo y el Nuevo Testamento
  • Sin dichas doctrinas nada de lo que aprendamos será fundamentado apropiadamente.
  • El fundamento de las enseñanzas apostólicas están claramente mencionadas en Titos 2.[3]

 

  1. La Iglesia es realmente una familia:

 

  • Tiene comunión los unos con los otros, comen juntos y oran juntos.

 

         Queridos hermanos, queremos señales, prodigios, sanaciones y milagros, pero insistimos en esta Iglesia americanizada que nos está robando el experimentar lo que verdaderamente Dios tiene para nosotros como Iglesia. Tenemos que tomar en serio la Palabra de Dios y rechazar todas esas doctrinas y tradiciones de hombre. Tenemos también que reconocer que somos llamados a mucho más que un servicio los Domingos, somos familia.

         He dicho muchas veces que la Iglesia necesita ser reformada, pero creo que el Presbítero José Bosque tiene mucha razón cuando nos dice que la Iglesia necesita una revolución. Seamos partes de esa revolución.

[1] “Que ningún necesitado había entre ellos: porque todos los que poseían heredades ó casas, vendiéndolas, traían el precio de lo vendido, 35 Y lo ponían á los pies de los apóstoles; y era repartido á cada uno según que había menester.” Hechos 4:34-35 (RVA)

[2] “Así que ya no sois extranjeros ni advenedizos, sino juntamente ciudadanos con los santos, y domésticos de Dios; 20 Edificados sobre el fundamento de los apóstoles y profetas, siendo la principal piedra del ángulo Jesucristo mismo; 21 En el cual, compaginado todo el edificio, va creciendo para ser un templo santo en el Señor:” Efesios 2:19-21 (RVA)

22 En el cual vosotros también sois juntamente edificados, para morada de Dios en Espíritu.” Efesios 2:19-22 (RVA)

[3] “EMPERO tú, habla lo que conviene á la sana doctrina:

Que los viejos sean templados, graves, prudentes, sanos en la fe, en la caridad, en la paciencia.

Las viejas, asimismo, se distingan en un porte santo; no calumniadoras, no dadas á mucho vino, maestras de honestidad:

Que enseñen á las mujeres jóvenes á ser predentes, á que amen á sus maridos, á que amen á sus hijos,

A ser templadas, castas, que tengan cuidado de la casa, buenas, sujetas á sus maridos: porque la palabra de Dios no sea blasfemada.

Exhorta asimismo á los mancebos á que sean comedidos;

Mostrándote en todo por ejemplo de buenas obras; en doctrina haciendo ver integridad, gravedad,

Palabra sana, é irreprensible; que el adversario se avergüence, no teniendo mal ninguno que decir de vosotros.

Exhorta á los siervos á que sean sujetos á sus señores, que agraden en todo, no respondones;

10 No defraudando, antes mostrando toda buena lealtad, para que adornen en todo la doctrina de nuestro Salvador Dios.

11 Porque la gracia de Dios que trae salvación á todos los hombres, se manifestó.

12 Enseñándonos que, renunciando á la impiedad y á los deseos mundanos, vivamos en este siglo templada, y justa, y píamente,

13 Esperando aquella esperanza bienaventurada, y la manifestación gloriosa del gran Dios y Salvador nuestro Jesucristo.

14 Que se dió á sí mismo por nosotros para redimirnos de toda iniquidad, y limpiar para sí un pueblo propio, celoso de buenas obras.

15 Esto habla y exhorta, y reprende con toda autoridad. Nadie te desprecie.”

Reina-Valera Antigua (RVA)

 

 

We Don’t Need Hollywood, We Need Jesus!


Hollywood Sign
Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA — Hollywood Sign — Image by © Robert Landau/CORBIS

I don’t even think that we as Christians should even engage on this Oscar’s conversation; it is their mess; it is the secular world. But I was compelled to make a statement as the direct result of a white Christian brother’s insensitive remarks on this matter.

We don’t get to start all over again; history is history with the good, bad and ugly! For some reason the wounds of racism in this country are still tender; it still hurts every time is touched.

We as minorities will have to find our validation only in God. ? I don’t think that is a bad thing. Have you ever consider doing a study on, according to God’s Word, who we are in Christ. We did not have any super heroes growing up. No Superman, No Spider man, no great Cowboy Hero, No James Bonds, etc.

Do you, white brothers and sisters, have any idea of what that does to a child growing up? Not looking at any super hero coming out of Hollywood that looks like them? Do you?

Do you know of the many Latinos and Black kids that wanted to be white just because the image they saw of the white man in movies and on TV? Always the smart one, always the one who end up with the pretty girl, always the hero, always the one who resolved everything; while the black man was the first one to die on the movie and the black woman in charge of cleaning the white man’s mansion. Do you really know what that does to our thinking?

Not only that, but in real life the police was white, the doctor was white, the lawyer was white, the famous coach was white, the Senator was White, the President was white and if you wanted to go to a good school, the teachers and the principal were white also. Oh I know, there were some blacks in these positions to, but history does not even mention them. That is why we needed to come up with a black history month. Not that our youth care, but they should.

So, I can care less that Hollywood did not find anybody that look like me worthy of even a nomination.

But I cry out in the desert and I plead with the souls of my brothers and my sister. Look up to the mountains; not the mountain where the big letters of Hollywood are? But look even higher, for our redeemer lives and he loves us and has a purpose for us. For my Bible tells me that the last shall be first.

So look up Haiti, look up Jamaica, look up Africa, look up all my Caribbean brothers and sisters and yes, look up my Afro-American brothers and sisters. We don’t need Hollywood, we need Jesus!!!!

 

I will lift up my eyes to the hills—

From whence comes my help?

2 My help comes from the Lord,

Who made heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1-2 (NKJV)

 

7 Reasons to Leave Your Church by Karl Vaters


walkingIndoor

Author: Karl Vaters more from this author »

NewSmallChurch.com

Please click on the link below:

http://www.sermoncentral.com/pastors-preaching-articles/karl-vaters-7-bad-reasons-to-leave-your-church-2365.asp?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_content=Jan+25%2C+2016&utm_campaign=scbpu&mkt_tok=3RkMMJWWfF9wsRogua3BZKXonjHpfsX56egsXa6%2BgIkz2EFye%2BLIHETpodcMSsdjN6%2BTFAwTG5toziV8R7DEJM1u2dkQXhXh

The Purpose of Apologetics


Paul_Preaching_On_Mars_Hill

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because  what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and   Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they  became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image  made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping    things.”[1]

            By looking at these verses we can clearly see that everyone already knows the truth. However, there is an agenda set by unrighteous men to suppress the truth. The word suppress is the Greek word katéchō meaning, “To have, hold. Hold fast, retain, or hold down, quash, suppress.[2] If there is no truth or if the world believes that there is no truth, then we must conclude that there is nothing for them to hold down. However, truth is obvious so they purposely engage in an agenda to suppress the only thing that can make people free.[3]

            So, if the truth is evident to every men and women on this earth, why is there a need for apologetics? The first and obvious answer is, because the Bible tells us so. The ministry of apologetics is not something born out of some philosophical and intellectuals want to be; apologetics has its foundation in Scripture. First Peter 3:15-16 tell us,

            “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness  and fear: 16 Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.” (KJV)

            The word answer is the Greek word Apologia, meaning, “To give an answer or speech in defense of oneself. A plea, defense before a tribunal or elsewhere.”[4] Groothuis gives us a specific definition for Christian apologetics; “Christian apologetics is the rational defense of the Christian worldview as objectively true, rationally compelling and existentially or subjectively engaging.”[5]

            Beilby also clearly identify other reasons to Biblically validate the ministry of apologetics; demolishing arguments, contending for the faith, refuting those who oppose sound doctrine and for gentle instruction.[6] However, the main purpose of Christian apologetics is to defend the orthodoxy of the Christian faith, the emphasis is not in defending doctrine, the emphasis is in defending dogma.[7] “Dogma is the core Christian claim; doctrine are attempts to explain.”[8]

            Up until not too long ago I did not have a clue regarding the word apologetics. I also asked myself, why do we have to apologize for our faith? As I gained a little more understanding I realize the vital need of apologetics in our society. There is indeed a need to defend the core claims of our faith. Personally, I believe that there is a greater need for internal apologetics than it is for external apologetics. Internal apologetics does not necessarily means those that are saved, but those who identify themselves as Christians whether they are saved or not. External apologetics focus on those who do not identify themselves as Christians.[9]

            The fact that internal apologetics deals with the saved and unsaved does not make it an easy task, but I believe that is extremely important that as we grow in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ[10] we do not neglect our core claims. If the core is neglected the doctrine is affected.

            With the spread and popularity of the charismatic movement, the constant emphasis on feelings and experiences rather than on core values and doctrine it is vital that the ministry of apologetics stand tall and strong defending the core of our faith from within first and then externally; for God’s judgment start in the house of God.[11]

            The last issue that I want to deal with on this post is the audience for apologetics. Beilby points out the difference between audience and context. Audience is the person or person you are addressing. Context, on the other hand, deals with the environment that surrounds the apologetic conversation.[12] I find this part very exciting; that is because the audience of apologetics varies. The reason I express such excitement is because apologetics is open to be expressed in different ways; private, public and academic apologetics.[13]

            Private apologetics takes place on a one-on-one or in small groups. Public apologetics is done in the presence of a general audience. Lastly, academic apologetics is done in a more formal and strict setting. This excites me because, just like evangelism, apologetics is not limited to public speaking, but it can be done over coffee, by taking a walk, at lunchtime during work, in the comfort of our homes, etc. Many people I know would be intimidated in a big group and I know I would be intimated in an academic setting. Also, people seem to be afraid of asking the tough questions in public for fear of being judge. However, they may be more willing to open up if they are just speaking informally with someone or in a small group of friends. What I am trying to say is that apologetics, with the proper training, is available for everyone.

[1] Romans 1:18-23 (New King James Version)
[2] Spiros Zodhiates, The Complete Word Study Dictionary: New Testament (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 2000).
[3] And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John 8:31 (KJV)
[4] Spiros Zodhiates, The Complete Word Study Dictionary: New Testament (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 2000).
[5] Douglass Groothuis, Christian Apologetics: A Comprehensive Case for Biblical Faith, (Downers, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2011) 24
[6] James K. Beilby, Thinking About Christian Apologetics: What it is and Why We Do it, (Downers Groove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2011) 14
[7] Ibid., 20
[8] Ibid., 19
[9] Ibid., 28
[10] “but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.” 2 Peter 3:18 (NKJV)
[11] For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? 1 Peter 4:17 (KJV)
[12] James K. Beilby, Thinking About Christian Apologetics: What it is and Why We Do it, 26
[13] Ibid., 26

El Evangelio Irresponsable


r-kelly-gala_wide-fa86cd2e8fd1ea4403148f9de16cd1402ff4f4fd-s900-c85

Las palabras que voy a escribir hoy van dirigidas, no a los perdidos, sino al Cuerpo de Cristo. Si eres Cristianos me gustaría que leyeras estas palabras cuidadosamente y que te tomes la libertad de responder a lo que aquí pretendo establecer.

         Hermanos, la salvación no nos costó absolutamente nada. La salvación es un regalo precioso de Dios. Efesios 2:9 nos dice, porque por gracia sois salvos por medio de la fe; y esto no de vosotros, pues es don de Dios. No por obras, para que nadie se gloríe,” Reina-Valera 1995 (RVR1995)

         No hay nada que nosotros podamos hacer que nos haga merecedores de semejante salvación. Todos estamos podridos en diversidad de pecados, algunos más obvios que otros, pero el pecado es pecado. La Biblia nos dice que si violamos aún una tilde de la ley somos culpable de la violación de toda la ley.[1] La Biblia también nos asegura que no hay nadie que sea considerado bueno ante los ojos de Dios, todos somos pecadores.[2]

         El punto que estoy tratando de establecer es que nadie se salvará por obras; las buenas obras del perdido son como trapos de inmundicia delante de Dios.[3] Ahora, una ves somos salvos nuestra relación con las obras cambia.

         Existe un evangelio irresponsable que establece que como Cristianos no estamos llamados a hacer nada que requiera esfuerzo de nuestra parte. Este tipo de actitud es más prominente entre la ala carismática del Cuerpo de Cristo. Si se ofrece una clase que intenta discutir en detalle, las doctrinas básicas der la Iglesia; el rechazo a la misma y la justificación por dicho rechazo es que todo lo que necesitamos aprender lo aprendemos del Espíritu Santo. Esto es parcialmente cierto; digo parcial porque los que usan este tipo de expresión asumen que todo lo que escuchan o todo lo que aprenden es de Dios. Esto no es así ya que Pablo nos dice que por boca de dos o tres testigos se decida todo asunto.[4] No todo lo que oímos es del Espíritu Santo.

         La ala carismática de Iglesia tiende a rechazar cualquier tipo de educación Bíblica formal. Lo ven como una violación a la fe. El énfasis viene a ser la manifestación del Espíritu, el uso de los dones y la bendición de Dios. El problema es que se están predicando muchas herejía. El énfasis viene a ser las emociones, lo visible y como nos sintamos; el énfasis ya no es la sana doctrina. Santiago nos dice,

 

         “Hermanos míos, ¿de qué aprovechará si alguno dice     que tiene fe y no tiene obras? ¿Podrá la fe salvarlo? 15 Y si un hermano o una hermana están desnudos y      tienen necesidad del mantenimiento de cada día, 16 y      alguno de vosotros les dice: «Id en paz, calentaos y        saciaos», pero no les dais las cosas que son          necesarias para el cuerpo, ¿de qué aprovecha? 17 Así   también la fe, si no tiene obras, está completamente      muerta. 18 Pero alguno dirá: «Tú tienes fe y yo tengo      obras. Muéstrame tu fe sin tus obras y yo te mostraré mi fe por mis obras.”[5]

 

         Dios es el único que puede transformar una vida, mas El demanda que vivamos vidas en santidad.[6] El ser santos es el ser personas separados para su gloria; personas que operan en esta vida no como el mundo, mas de acuerdo a las formas de Dios. Mateo 7:19 nos dice, “Todo árbol que no da buen fruto, es cortado y echado en el fuego.” (Reina Valera 1995).

         Hermanos, uno de los problemas más grandes que tenemos en la Iglesia es que nos parecemos al mundo. Desde la forma de gobernar la Iglesia, la música, aún las prédicas que deben ser centradas en la Biblia, están más centradas en filosofías mundanas y materialismo. Hermanos, necesitamos el fuego del Espíritu Santo, la manifestación de Su gloria, el alabar a Dios con libertad. Mas también debemos recordar que Jesucristo se pasaba la mayor parte de su tiempo enseñando. Los Apóstoles enfatizaban mucho en la sana doctrina.

         Mi corazón es poder juntar estas dos alas, la pasión del pentecostal con la disciplina de la ortodoxia. Levantar un pueblo que no solo lea la Palabra, mas que la estudie.[7] Un pueblo que tenga pasión para crecer en gracia y en el conocimiento de Jesús.[8]

         Hermanos, dejemos las irresponsabilidades y las perezas espirituales. Estudiemos la Palabra, permitamos que nuestra teología sea retada, crezcamos y esforcémonos con la ayuda de Dios. Reconozcamos que solo conocemos en parte, mas estemos preparados para,

“…presentar defensa con mansedumbre y reverencia ante todo el que os demande razón de la esperanza que hay en vosotros.” Primera de Pedro 3:15 (RVR1995)

[1] Santiago 2:10

[2] Romanos 3:10 / Eclesiastés 7:20 / Romanos 3:23

[3] “pues todos nosotros somos como cosa impura,

todas nuestras justicias como trapo de inmundicia…” Isaías 64:6 Reina-Valera 1995 (RVR1995)

[4] 2 Corintios 13:1

[5] Santiago 2:14-18 (Reina Valera 1995)

[6] Primera de Pedro 1:16

[7] 2 Timoteo 2:15

[8] 2 Pedro 3:18

The Lost in our Own Homes


depraved-mind

The absent of a Godly life in our daily walk and routines is the key that opens many doors for the embrace of evil life styles. This unrighteous path leads to death; the Bible tells us in Proverbs 12:28,

 

In the way of righteousness is life,

And in its pathway there is no death. (NKJV)

 

There is no death in the path of righteousness, but when we insist in following unrighteousness, death becomes the obvious fruit.

Some evil life styles are obvious; lying, fornicating, committing adultery, acts of violence, immoral behaviors and talks, etc. But there is a greater evil that takes place in the heart of a man and that is the development of a prideful spirit.[1] Not prideful or arrogance in the way we may think of somebody that comes across as if they are better than anybody else, but prideful in the sense that is there is a total absent of acknowledging God in anything. The Bible tells us,

 

In all your ways acknowledge Him,

And He shall direct your paths. (NKJV)

 

To acknowledge God in ALL of our ways is not a recommendation; it is a mandate. Everything that we do without acknowledging, that means, giving God the glory for it, is sin. It is sin because it us taking the glory that belongs to God.[2]

From the time they wake up to the time they go to bed there is no thought of God or any desire to give Him glory. There is no thanksgiving to God in their vocabulary; God is never present in their conversation. They live a total secularize life.

They sit next to us in our churches; some are our own families, our own spouses and even our own children, but the disconnection to God is obvious. These folks never read the Word; they have nothing to say about God, they have no interest on the things of God. They are amongst us, but they are not a part of God’s family. But somebody would get offended if we say that the brazing fire of hell is awaiting them, unless salvation visits them. Somebody may even argue that they are saved; but where are the fruits?[3] Why are we fooling ourselves thinking that because they are a wife, a husband, a son or a daughter of a believer that somehow there is a magic formula where there is no need for Jesus and no need for them to bear fruit? Is there any other Gospel?[4] Have the rules change?[5]

We have lost people in our own homes; we go to bed with un-repented sinners, we dwell with them under our own roofs. So what can we do? Pray[6], yes… pray! It is not a waste of time; it is the best tool that we have at our disposal to betterment of this fallen humanity. They can’t save themselves; they are dead.[7] They need the gift of salvation[8], that precious gift that will turn them into a new creation.[9]

What else can we do? Preach the Gospel in as many ways as possible.[10] Faith comes by hearing[11]; there is no other way for faith to enter in; somebody has to communicate this Gospel to the lost.

We should not be surprise that people without God will go deeper into their perdition. We pray that they don’t get to the point when God totally turns them over. The wrath of God is manifest in a very strange way; God will turn them over to enjoy what they desire.[12] But we must be reminded that there is a war in the inside of us according to Galatian 5:16-17,

I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. (NKJV)

 

The key on this verse is the fact that this struggle between the flesh and the Spirit of God is designed so that we do not have the freedom to do what our flesh desire. The Christian struggles with sin also, but they can’t ever become good sinners, for the Spirit of God in them brings forth conviction of sin.[13] The struggle is real! Also remember that even a non-born again Christian has a conscience that also stops him or her to totally surrender to a deprive life.[14]

However, Romans 1:18-31 is the removal of this struggle; it is the sign that person or that nation is at the end of the road. The wages of sin is dead according to Romans 6:23; that is any sin; how much more when we are turn over for a total reprobate man;

 

And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Romans 1:28 (NKJV)

 

That word reprobate is very important as it gives us the direction that the lost are heading. It is the direction that even those in our own homes are heading. This is synonymous with, degenerate, wrongdoer, sinner, and good for nothing and others. This is the character of the world system; this is the character of secularism. So when our friends and love ones continue to insist in sin, the natural progression will take us to this place of a reprobate mind.

However, even when you see them there, continue to pray and continue to keep hope alive, for the gift of salvation is not based on what a person does or how good or bad they are. We can’t ever be good enough to earn salvation, but our unrighteousness can’t ever be so bad as to keep us away from God’s salvation; for salvation is not base on works, but on the mystery of His election.[15] From the liar to the violent, from the murderer to the rapist and from the less sinful according to the world to the greatest representative of evil, we all have the hope of salvation.

In First Corinthians we read the story of a man who had sex with his dad’s wife. In second Corinthians he repented and he to received the forgiveness of our God.

So we pray for the lost, why should we be surprise by the increasing of evil activities in their lives? It is the life without God! But in all and through all, we pray and we hope, we hope and we pray.

[1] James 4:6

[2] Romans 3:23

[3] Matthew 7:16

[4] 2 Corinthians 11:4

[5] John 6:44

[6] Romans 10:1 / First Timothy 2:1-4

[7] Ephesian 2:1

[8] Ephesians 2:8-9

[9] 2 Corinthians 5:17

[10] Mark 6:15

[11] Romans 10:17

[12] For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality,[c] wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving,[d] unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them. Romans 1:18-31 (NKJV)

[13] John 16:8

[14] Romans 2:14-15

[15] (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) Romans 9:11 (NKJV)

Jesus Paid for our Salvation, But We Will Pay for Our Pursue of Holiness


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But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance, and do not think to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones. 10 And even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Matthew 3:7-10 (NKJV)

It is important to point out that in Christ we are already righteous according to Romans 3:22 and other Bible verses. Nevertheless, what we are in Christ is not an excuse for us to walk without responsibility. The grace of God is not an excuse to sin, but a motivation to pursue holiness.

The Bible encourages us to walk in the Spirit and not in the flesh according to Galatians 5:16. Our flesh, the world system and every demon in hell will come against that kind of walk and will affect our daily decision making, however; even with all that we are already in Christ, we are told how to walk.

When it comes down to salvation I am a Calvinist. I don’t agree with all five Calvinistic points, however, I do agree that salvation is all God’s doing. I do not subscribe to the Arminian view of salvation as one that involves men making the decision to accept God; that men actually cooperate in any way in their own salvation. Ephesians 2:9 zeal the mater for me,

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. (NKJV)

Salvation is indeed by grace alone, by faith alone and all for the glory of God. This is indeed the heart of the Reformation. No works can possibly be added to our own salvation. I say these things to establish that when it comes down to our holiness, even as it is God who does the hard work of changing our heart, it does require our cooperation. Well, perhaps I was too soft on this last sentence. Let me be sincerer; holiness, the pursued of God, the separation from the world system to be use by God for His glory will cost us EVERYTHING.

  1. It will cost for us to deny ourselves. (Mathew 16:24)

Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. (KJV)

  1. It will cost us to turn away from the culture of the world system, what they define as acceptable and not acceptable and whatever they have to offer.

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. (Romans 12:2)

  1. It will cost us losing our lives. (Luke 17:33)

Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it. (KJV)

  1. It will cost us to give up many friendships. (James 4:4)

Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. (KJV)

  1. In some cases, it will cost us our own families. (Matthew 10:34-37)

Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. 35 For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; 36 and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’ 37 He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. (NKJV)

  1. It will cost us persecution. (Timothy 3:1-12)

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, disapproved concerning the faith; but they will progress no further, for their folly will be manifest to all, as theirs also was.10 But you have carefully followed my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love, perseverance, 11 persecutions, afflictions, which happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra—what persecutions I endured. And out of them all the Lord delivered me. 12 Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. (NKJV)

            However, on the other side of paying this price there are also remarkable blessings. Those blessing will describe in another article. God bless!

After Two Years in Fairbanks, Alaska


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The beggining

God is faithful; a statement that we use and hear constantly; that is, because it is true.

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Making Progress

            I came to Fairbanks, Alaska in the middle of a two-year study of revivals and church history. I was particularly impressed with the Azusa Street Revival. Because of that, I wanted to be a part of a Church of God in Christ Church. I realized very quickly that we should not be chasing after revivals, we should be chasing after God.

            Coming to Alaska was not an easy task; different climate, not knowing anybody and being so far from family and friends, still today, is difficult. God blessed me with a job as a Job Coach at Fairbanks Resource Agency, and then I became a Care Coordinator with the same agency. About a year ago I left FRA and started working for ResCare Alaska as a care coordinator also.

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Working Hard!

            The federal government decided some years back that it was a conflict of interest for care coordinators to work with agencies that offer services to our consumers. Therefor, care coordinators were forced out of these agencies to either work independently or, like many did, quit that profession.

            ResCare offered me another job; they made it very clear that they wanted to keep me working with them. However, on a bicycle ride during the summer I heard the voice of the Lord in my heart, “Faith Base Care Coordination”. I told only my wife, but I did not know what to do with the information.

With my Good Friend Pat Keyser

                In a conversation with Pat Keyser, the other care coordinator who I first met at FRA, we realize that we both shared the common feeling that we did not like the job that ResCare was offering to us. We love the agency, we love our supervisor; however, our hearts were into care coordination. From that moment on we started the process of establishing our own care coordination business. Wow, what a journey!

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            I have a second building in our home. That building is divided in two. One is my wife’s sowing room and the other was my room for me to do whatever I wanted. I had many ideas in the last couple of years, but finally I knew what that building was for. Pat and I started working on building a couple of office spaces and a closet. We work so hard!

            As of December 7, 2015 Fusion Care Coordination and Keyser Care Coordination Services are oficially in business. I own my own business, praise the Lord! I was able to keep all of my clients. God, again, has shown himself faithful in this whole process. Pat Keyser and I share the same building, but we are each independent.

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My Office

            As great as having my own business is, the highlight of 2015 for me was going back to teaching God’s Word in a consistence basis. After two years and not finding much of a purpose for me here in Alaska, God open a door for me to teach a Disciple Curriculum that is being in my heart for some time now. I am grateful for Pastor Jeff at North Pole Church of God House of Prayer for giving me the opportunity to serve as a teacher of God’s Word.

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Pat “The Hunter” Keyser’s Office

           After two years in Alaska I find plenty of reason to wake up in the morning and face the blessing and challenges of each day. God is indeed faithful.

Beyond the Purpose


Bridge over a pond in the winter, Johannapark, Leipzig, Germany

The Bible is not silent concerning our purpose; in fact, the Bible gives the topic of purpose in our lives a great deal of importance. We are encouraged to write the vision down.[1] Jeremiah also reminds us that God has plans for our life.[2] Nevertheless, our purpose should never be what drives our lives.

         In First Corinthians 12, after Paul gives us the list of all the spiritual gifts; he finishes this chapter with a clear introduction to First Corinthians 13;

 

“But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way.” I Corinthians 12:31 NKJV

 

The more excellent way is to walk in love. Hebrews 12:14 describe to us how that love looks like. Hebrews in fact tells us what the driven force of our focus should be.

 

“Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord:”

Hebrews 12:14 NKJV

 

We look for so many ways to find satisfaction; to find joy, to find peace. Many destroy themselves through drugs and alcohol. But Matthew 5:6 gives us a great promise that guaranty us a filled life.

Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. (KJV)

 

 

 

 

 

[1] Habakkuk 2:2

[2] Jeremiah 29:11

The Hippie Gospel


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Holiness is like courage. Courage is not the absent of fear; courage moves forward in spite of fear for the sake of a cause and/or for the sake of the innocent. Holiness is to do the Godly thing even when your flesh desires otherwise.

         You find yourself in need of money. Walking around the park you find a wallet with $1,000.00 cash in it. You know you can find a thousand reasons to keep that money, but your conscience tells you to find the owner of that wallet and return it with all the money in it. That, my friends, is contrary to Satan’s systems that encourages stealing according to John 10:10

         You find yourself single or maybe not sexually fulfilled in your marriage. In that stage of great physical need a beautiful woman practically offers herself to you. Your body is ready for sex, but your desire for holiness is greater, so you walk away as God showed you the exit.[1]

         Holiness is doing things according to God’s will in spite of how you feel about the matter. Holiness is separation, integrity, and the highest demonstration of love and commitment to God.[2] It is a sad thing when the world sees more righteousness coming out of false religions that they do coming out of us.

         There is a hippie Gospel out there that teaches; “well… the best we can do is filthy rags before the Lord anyway. We are already sanctified in Christ, so let’s just enjoy life, nobody is perfect… right? The blood of Jesus covers my sins…don’t judge me! So let’s party and let’s party hard.”

         Many are embracing a Gospel without responsibility. It is the Gospel that judges any kind of works as legalistic; it is the Gospel that justifies and makes provisions for sin.

         I hope you understand that I am not talking about works to gain salvation. Salvation is a free gift from God that can’t ever be gained by any works.[3] Salvation is all God’s work. However, if you are saved it is expected that you do some works.[4] When you adapt this hippie gospel, you adapt a doctrine that announces your own death. Faith without works is death.[5]

         Beloved, it is ok to workout our own salvation.[6] Do you know what that means? This is not a matter of the salvation of your soul; this is about obedience; this is indeed about holiness. It points out what you and I should be pursuing. The Apostle Paul is making a plead for obedience. It points out to us the doing of our part; it is a hunger and a thirst for righteousness that indeed will be satisfied.[7]

         Holiness is the believer’s main responsibility and it was the center of the Apostle’s doctrine. Holiness is the manifestation of love for God and for our neighbor. Holiness is what is expected of the believer.

         Some are teaching that you need to be justified, sanctified and baptized with the Holy Ghost in order to be saved. I say that is false doctrine. I tell you that if you don’t have any inclination to walk in holiness, you are either not saved or in great need of discipleship, for only those who walk in holiness will indeed see God.[8]

         Beloved, holiness is the fruit of righteousness[9] manifesting in you and me. What can possibly make us different from the world than the fruit of the Spirit?[10] Jesus stated that we will be known be our fruit.[11]

         Beloved, it is ok to look at yourself; it is ok to make an assessment of our fruit and to search the quality of our walk.[12] It is ok to change; it is ok to grow in grace.[13] How much longer are we going to embrace this hippie gospel?

[1] First Corinthians 10:13

[2] John 14:23

[3] Ephesians 2:8-9

[4] James 2:14-26

[5] James 2:17

[6] Philippians 2:12

[7] Matthew 5:6

[8] Hebrews 12:14

[9] Philippians 1:11

[10] Galatians 5:22-23

[11] Matthew 7:16

[12] Psalm 4:4

[13] 2 Peter 3:18